HEALTH BY GOD'S DESIGN
by D.J. Scott, D.M., N.D., D.C.
For many years it has been the desire of my heart to introduce the Christian culture to the knowledge of therapeutic fasting. Like all things done in God's timing, this opportunity provides a way that I could not have envisioned. For this I am most grateful to Dr. Bright, who has asked me to contribute an explanation of therapeutic fasting to his book, "The Coming Revival: America's Call to Fast, Pray and Seek God's Face". You may find many of these truths difficult to believe. These are mind and heart searching times. This subject for you may be your time for learning. My desire is only to teach that which the Lord has allowed me to learn.
Therapeutic Fasting is the most powerful God designed tool ever for the recovery of our health. Should we Christians wonder at that? Of course not. Its usefulness came built into the very fabric of life by the WISDOM OF HIS DESIGN.
Just take a few minutes of your time to look with me at one single therapy designed by God, applicable in a multitude of diseases, which is just as up to date today as it was 5,000 years ago; just as consistent with life as breathing, and yet free of iatrogenic (doctor caused) complications.
HISTORY OF FASTING
The history of fasting goes back into antiquity. Modern day Christians have been deceived into thinking that somehow Christ, in his physical human body, along with prophets of old were simply given supernatural powers to accomplish the feat of going forty days without food. Not so. Today in my practice people do this routinely, believers and nonbelievers alike. This is made possible by the living God who built into human flesh physical laws of nature which, if obeyed, will bring into our lives great blessings of well being and health. If we defy these same laws of our God designed nature, then we become cursed (diseased) by our own personal disobedience.
TEMPTATIONS TO MISTREAT OUR BODIES
Corrupting our flesh with toxic and poisonous products was never intended by the Sustainer and Provider of Life as a means of maintaining life. This principle applies to believer and nonbeliever alike. Again, the principle is true because God, except in specific intervention, showers his natural blessings equally on both groups. "The rain falls on the just and the unjust alike". We believers must clearly understand that our body is not spiritual -- not yet. Yes it can be dedicated to the spiritual kingdom of God, but even so, our physical bodies still follow all the natural God-designed physical laws of nature and as such can be corrupted or kept healthier by choices.
Even Christ, while He could have at any moment called forth twelve legions of angels, refused to comply with Satan's temptation when he said, "Jump off from this high place, and angels will bear you up". Christians daily are listening to this same destroyer when they are told to go ahead and jump off from high places with flesh corrupting habits which cause diseases. A greater danger here is that we are then asked to believe that angels of modern science will bear us up with the magic of more toxic agents called medicine.
In the physical sense fasting provides one more evidence of God's divine character of forgiveness displayed as we watch corrupted human flesh transformed back to health through regenerative healing.
ANCIENT GREECE AND EGYPT
Because you, the reader, probably know little or nothing about the history of fasting, let me take you briefly to a wealth of knowledge brought to us by the most brilliant of both ancient and modern scholars. I won't take you to holy writ, because Dr. Bright has done that far more competently than I could.
First of all therapeutic fasting means not only zero calorie intake, but it also means no food at all -- in any form. Only pure water intake is used.
Apart from scripture, the earliest records of therapeutic fasting date back to the ancient civilizations of Greece and the Near East. Plato and Socrates fasted for physical and mental efficiency.
Pythagoras required his students to fast before entering his classes.
Ancient Egyptians resolved syphilis with therapeutic fasting. The renowned Greek physician Hippocrates recognized therapeutic fasting as of primary importance in disease.
EUROPE AND RUSSIA
In the 16th century a famous Swiss physician Paracelsus said, "Fasting is the greatest remedy". In the 17th century Dr. Hoffman wrote a book "Description of the Magnificent Results Obtained Through Fasting In All Diseases".
A century later Dr. Von Seeland, of Russia wrote that "fasting is a therapeutic of the highest degree possible". Likewise Dr. Adolph Mayer of Germany wrote, "Fasting is the most efficient means of correcting any disease". Also Dr. Moeller wrote that "fasting is the only natural evolutionary method whereby through a systemic cleansing you can restore yourself by degrees to physiological normality".
MODERN FASTING RESEARCH
Literally hundreds of brilliant scholars have contributed to the modern day scientific research into the exact physiological characteristics of fasting.
Many hundreds of scientific papers have been published on the subject. The archives of most famous universities are bulging with research data on fasting. The most famous personalities in scientific research are Professors Child, of the University of Chicago, Langfield of Harvard, Allen of Rockefeller Institute, Benedict and Ritzman of Carnegie Institute, Morgulis of the University of Nebraska, along with numbers of European physiologists as well.
MILLIONS OF SUPERVISED FASTS
Over the last two centuries well known physicians have used and prescribed therapeutic fasting here in America. It could be reasonably estimated that collectively a million or more such fasts have been conducted under supervision. This therapy has been used in almost every disease known. The modern day physician periodically doing sophisticated biochemical blood profiles during the fast attempts to clearly track quantitatively and therefore physiologically almost every organ, system, and disease process -- "The life is in the blood". The great advantage of this evaluation is that it defines safety during the fast. Early on, evidence of developing physiological deficiency becomes visible should the organism begin to weaken vitally. This possibility of course indicates a resuming of selectively corrective feeding within individual tolerances. Astute study of the patient's physiology as measured biochemically during the near basal state of fasting contributes immensely to diagnostic precision rarely observed except during the acute stages of disease.
Most amazing and marvelous physiological qualities have been designed by God into life -- all forms of physical life -- from the most microscopic to the ultimate of His creative wisdom -- man.
FROM FOOD TO NUTRITION
Certain characteristics are common to all forms of physical life. The very foundational necessity for all forms of life sustenance is nutrition. Nothing living can be sustained without nutrition. Food is not nutrition. We've all seen this in wasting diseases. Stuffing with food is of no help. Food rather is the raw material of nutrition. Food must be digested, absorbed, transported, modified, and utilized to be nutrition. To accomplish this requires a multitude of precisely integrated physiological processes.
We talk about the complexity of the universe in which we live. One human cell, and there are trillions in each of us, is more complex than that universe in which we live. Only God could design such a magnificent mechanism wherein every single cellular universe is constantly striving towards precisely harmonious integration (health). Fasting is never starvation. Starvation is rapidly fatal because nutrient is not available. Never for one moment in the fast is the organism deprived of essential nutrients. These are quickly mobilized from internal resources.
HEALING AND REPAIR = REGENERATION
Fasting allows physiologically for nutritional reorganization. Livers repair, stomachs heal, intestines gain tone. There is hardly a tissue that doesn't benefit from nutritional regeneration during the fast.
Regeneration is the term we use to describe healing and repair. This quality is so tremendously enhanced in a fast that many diseases which never subside while one is eating, rather quickly heal during the fast.
There is one quality of fasting which is genuinely awesome and even miraculous, and yet it is truly natural to life. This characteristic is the ability of living things including humans to regain youthfulness. This physiological (scientific) characteristic is called rejuvenescence. There is no other way. Experimental scientists have clearly demonstrated rejuvenescence by fasting lower forms of life. Some of these forms of life live out their entire life cycle in a few days or weeks. They can be easily used for such experimental research.
Deprived of food, such creatures can be fasted back from the adult to the embryonic stage of life. This is as if they are reborn. The process can be carried on through many generations after their brothers and sisters have died. In some cases certain creatures that normally live and die in a few weeks have been kept alive for several years.
This principle does not precisely apply to man. Man cannot be fasted back to the embryonic stage. But man can benefit from the same physiological characteristic present in his tissues. At the University of Chicago, Carlson and Kunde fasted a 40 year old male two weeks discovering his cellular physiology was that of a seventeen year old. These benefits are acquired by ridding the cells of toxic metabolic accumulants.
One of the characteristic features of youthfulness is seen in the cell to nucleus ratio. Youthful cells have a preponderance of nuclear material, while old and senile cells have a preponderance of cellular material.
AUTOLYSIS OF TUMORS
Another amazing characteristic of fasting is the principle of autolysis. This is the ability of the organism to selectively self digest and remove unwanted material and accumulations from within the body without touching vital structures. This is a normal quality of God designed physiology. In fasting, this quality of life becomes greatly enhanced so that many tumors, cysts, abscesses, abnormal accumulations, fatty deposits etc. may be completely or largely absorbed.
VITAL TISSUE PROTECTION
A most brilliant design characteristic about life in the fast is that while we are fasting and securing our nutrition from many internal resources, not one minuscule fragment of the eyeball or the brain is consumed as food. The food resources during the fast are mainly fat and to a lesser degree the cytoplasm of muscle, liver, bone marrow and other organ cells. None of these living tissue structures are sacrificed. They are only reduced in size. The more vital the tissue, the less it is touched. Contemplate this thought for a while, and you quickly realize the brilliance of our Maker.
IMPROVES FOOD ASSIMILATION
Again, another physiological characteristic of fasting, but more especially important to those who suffer from malabsorption, is the ability to restore assimilative powers. This helps the people who can eat, but can't gain weight or strength.
REST WHILE FASTING
Both physiological and physical rest are absolutely essential to recovery from most serious health problems such as hypertension, congestive heart failure, and arteriosclerosis with angina, just to name a few. Food is one of the biggest workloads on all systems, but especially so on the heart and circulation. Stopping all food not only puts the entire intestinal tract at rest, but also the heart and most other organs as well. This is physiological rest. Add recumbent bed rest, which is physical rest, to this life support system and we see most serious conditions regenerate to improved health in extended fasts. Without near total physical rest, however, such cases will not experience the regenerative healing anticipated.
Increased elimination of toxic metabolic waste during the fast is evidenced by many uncomfortable symptoms which may or may not develop during one's fast. Very bad breath, terrible taste in the mouth, body odor, foul discharges, eruptions on the skin, fever, diarrhea, and transient vomiting frequently become indicators of vital life saving actions of elimination. The discomforts associated with increased elimination subside as the offending toxins and related diseases are removed by these same beneficent vital life saving actions.
Hormone imbalances are often corrected in the fast. This is more obvious in the young female who may be infertile or suffering from amenorrhea. Commonly we see menstrual cycles restored after only two to three weeks of fasting. Many sterile marriages have been able to conceive following the fast. Impotent males, are not an uncommon occurrence in our society today. These folks are most grateful when they can recover normal marriage relationships.
BENEFITS TO THE BRAIN & NERVES
I cannot leave the physiological characteristics of fasting without touching on the benefits to the nervous system. The benefits to the mind alone can be enormous. I use no psychological therapy whatsoever during the fast except for comforting reassurance. Yet I see people gradually recover mental stability. There is a strong delusion about today which says that all our problems are in our minds. Remember God designed the human brain just as easily as he designed the human heart. The brain is the organ of the mind, just as surely as the heart is the central organ of circulation. I do not believe that the brain is the mind, but I do know that brain chemistry affects the mind.
If your mind is upset, first look at how you are poisoning your brain. Your brain chemistry is designed by God to maintain mental comfort in health. In some physical diseases (often undetected) the brain screams with symptoms. Also, commonly, people consume food additives, drugs, and substances to which they are sensitive or allergic.
These may cause brain chemistry alterations with seriously disturbing mental consequences. These sensitizing agents cannot be present in our internal environment if our brain chemistry is to return to and stay normal.
This is why we may see uncontrollable moods, intolerable feelings, abysmal depression, and mental confusions return to normal comfort even while fasting. My experience indicates that many mental aberrations, are really physiological rather than psychological in nature.
Regarding the usefulness of fasting, there are few diseases where it is not applicable. The quality of experienced, well trained professional supervision however, remains of paramount importance. This physician must qualify first of all by total dedication to the inherent WISDOM OF DESIGN. He must shun all forms of toxic assault which are only intended to relieve unpleasant symptoms. Many symptomatic remedies are toxic agents and should only be resorted to where the doctor believes there is a life threatening emergency. All drugs, homeopathic remedies, and even natural herbal drugs are avoided in the fast.
The body best does its own work of defense and repair unhampered by the suppression of its repair activities. Drugs, along with various toxic remedies, are generally dangerous during a fast. Their dosage could be very fragile. There are very few exceptions. The insulin dependent diabetic may have to be under the care of a diabetologist. Here again, the dosage would have to be adjusted very carefully. While the ocular pressure in glaucoma falls during a fast, to remove medication prematurely and without monitoring could result in blindness. Some drugs, such as steroids, have to be withdrawn gradually.
Asthmatics, even the worst lifetime cases, can usually be drug free within a few days to a week or so. As a chiropractic physician I require that with the exception of asthmatics, medication must first be withdrawn by the medical physician in charge or with his or her conferring supervision during the fast.
LIVING BETTER AFTER FASTING
Lifestyle after the fast is just as important if not more important than the fast itself. If you intend to go back to the world's lifestyle of sensualistic feeding, including high fat, high protein (meat, cheese, butter, milk, eggs, ice cream etc.) condiments, seasonings, tea, coffee, refined, processed, or denatured foods along with those many foods which contain an abundance of female hormones and carcinogenic agents, then most certainly all your diseases will return. Arteries will rapidly block again with degeneration. It is only a matter of time. Even those folks who prioritize their appearance over inner beauty and health will reactivate their tumors with toxic hair dyes, permanents, cosmetics, hormones etc. Like the new testament character who swept his house clean, the demons all left but when they returned they brought their many friends to occupy a cleaned up dwelling. That man's last state was worse than his first.
Why indulge in the "demons" (foodstuffs) of death which God never designed to arrive on our tables in the way they have been commercially altered today? The diet God designed for man was fruits and vegetables. He did this and fully provided for man's needs in the garden. After sin entered He allowed man to add other things to His prescribed diet but without the guilt of sin. The great difference today is that man adulterates everything he touches.
I believe the food sin we Christians engage in today is not the food we eat, but rather the enslavement to those foods. Stop suddenly any substance which you consume regularly and if you suffer discomforts of any kind then you are addicted to that substance -- just as surely as the alcoholic is addicted. Try it with tea and coffee first. These are addictive drugs, not foods. Sweets and chocolate are also enslaving "demons" because the confection industry seemingly adds identically the same addictive additives as the tobacco industry.
This information comes from a recent confession by a tobacco industry spokesman -- who during federal investigations of additives used by the tobacco industry to cause addiction -- stated, "We only use the same additives the confection industry uses." Perhaps you know people who are swilling down soft drinks all day long? These folks are addicted just as surely as the alcoholic. Believers may even criticize alcoholics, but fail to recognize their own socially acceptable addictions. We must remember, "There but by the grace of God go I". A famous doctor once said that "an alcoholic may live to a ripe old age but a glutton, never".
Dear friends, this world's values have seductively and totally invaded the Christian home with seemingly innocent things. We have adjusted to the world's mold unknowingly. If we value our life -- the life God has given us to serve Him, then we must care for it tenderly. Wholesomeness as God defines wholesomeness must be complied with to be beneficial. Anything else causes genetic damage with degenerative consequences. God put man in a garden because He designed him as one who feeds on seed bearing fruit and succulent vegetables. Huge populations throughout history have successfully survived and remained relatively disease free by adding grains and legumes to this diet. Absolutely essential to this success has been mother's milk provided through a lengthy period of infancy. Amazing isn't it that primitives and peasants understand this importance, while the educated and culturally advantaged abandon God's plan for healthful feeding.
Abandon God's plan for healthful feeding and man rapidly degenerates. In America today, degenerative disease is already discoverable in the newborn. By age ten degeneration is well developed. And by age twenty degenerative disease is into advanced stages. What is the prognosis for longevity and health? Here it is -- early strokes, heart attacks, and cancer, plus, for many, years of constant suffering until the raging war within to survive is finally lost.
Even if you don't love your own life, and even if you are willing to sacrifice it to science, at least love your children and take them off the omnivorous diet, which is the American diet -- the pursuit of sensualism without restraint. Omnivores eat anything and everything edible. Scientifically omnivores are classified along with the porcine (swine) family. Porcine behavior and porcine health is consistent with porcine lifestyle values which includes the porcine diet. Maybe we Christians are ready to "look and live".
FASTING IS NATURAL
Fasting is never another mystical or magical system of "curing" disease. It is rather a natural physiological approach to the progressive recovery of health by allowing the organism to rest and restore its normal physiological status which is health. This includes its ability to heal and repair but always, within its own limits and tolerances.
As a final thought, let me say, these simple truths are available to those who have been allowed to learn through suffering. I believe God has allowed me to learn these truths because I value His wisdom above the wisdom of men. I have yet to find in the field of verifiable science where this confidence in the WISDOM OF DESIGN has been betrayed. Of course I do consult with other physicians and refer to other specialists when a problem is outside my appropriate care. Gratefully the vast majority of human health problems can be greatly improved by simple lifestyle changes. Sometimes this includes fasting.
LIFE is profound. These TRUTHS are simple. Maybe you would choose to share with me my lifetime motto -- "Profound Simplicity".
THERAPEUTIC FASTING IS ONLY RECOMMENDED
UNDER THE CARE OF A PHYSICIAN